Michaelmas Term 2019– Notices


Welcome to the Library to all our new starters this term, and welcome back to everyone else! This is a brief blog post sign post information about the College Library and to get you up to speed with changes to the College Library over the summer vacation.


Induction tours for Freshers

Induction tours for Undergraduate Freshers start on Tuesday 8nd October and continue throughout Freshers’ week. Tours take about 30 minutes and are arranged by subject group. Your tour time will be listed in the induction timetable included in your Freshers’ pack (this will also be e-mailed out to you). We look forward to meeting you and showing you around.

If you have any questions about the Library or finding resources in general, either before or after the tour, then please ask the Library staff (Tom and Ellie) or check the website: College Library website

Vaction Loans

Term time borrowing rules apply from 7am Tuesday 8th October, all books borrowed from that time will be under the new borrowing rules (see below). Vacation Loans need to be returned or renewed before 14th October.

Changes to the Borrowing Rules

Automatic renewals

For continuers one big change you will notice is in the borrowing rules, in partular the introduction of automatic renewals! This is a change you will notice across most libraries in Cambridge this year. We now automatically renew your 7 day (or 28 day) loans. That means you no longer need to remember to renew them online, you can keep them until someone requests them, or you don’t need them anymore.

You will get a monthly courtesy e-mail summarising all the loans you have across the various libraries you use but we still strongly encourage you to keep track of you loans online and to bring books back when you’ve finished with them (of course!).

All loans will be requested for return by the Library at the end of Michaelmas term and Easter term, but will otherwise autorenew.

What if book is on loan to someone else? – Requests/Recalls

If the book you need is on loan to someone else, and you need it, you can request them to bring it back by using the ‘request’ option in iDiscover. They should bring it back within three days. If you are really short of time then get in touch with us as we might be able to help you find a copy elsewhere or consider purchasing another copy.

What if one of my books is requested? – Requests/recalls

We will ask you to bring your books back sooner if someone else requests them. We will email your Cambridge email address to let you know if the book(s) must come back quickly. Fines are £1 a day if you don’t bring these books back on time so check your email account often.

We may also contact you and ask you to bring books back if you have had them for a long time. Don’t hang on to books that you no longer need!

Short Loans  – Law books

Wigglesworth Law Library Overnight Loans have changed to ‘short loans’, these are 4 day loans that cannot be renewed. Short loan due dates will not normally fall on a weekend.  Fines are £1 a day if you don’t bring these books back. These are items that a lot of students will need at the same time and we need to keep them circulating quickly. There are usually multiple copies of the core Law texts, including normal loans and possibly a reference copy,  check iDiscover for extra print copies, or ebook versions.

Student Wellbeing and borrowing from libraries

We’re trying to make our rules for borrowing as simple and as consistent as possible across the libraries in Cambridge, including the College Libraries:

  1. Remembering different rules for every library can be stressful, so we hope fewer rules which are more consistent will be easier for everyone.
  2. Due dates for returning items in nearly all the libraries should not fall at a weekend. You should never have a book go overdue at a weekend; making weekends a little less stressful!
  3. Fines are only used for overdue items that need to circulate really quickly or are needed by another person. We need the items back to make sure that all students get the chance to read the material.
  4. You’ll get a monthly statement on the 2nd of every month with a list of what you have out on that date (and just in case you have overdue fines), so it’s a good opportunity to check your account and keep track of items you might have forgotten you had out.

My section has moved! Where is it? Why do the labels look different?

IMage of new book labels

Over the last couple of years we have been updating and improving our classification scheme. This mostly involves reviewing the section and creating subdivisions, which  make it a lot easier to browse the collection and find related books within your subject. We’ve also taken the opportunity to rationalise some of the larger sections and divide them up. As a result, this summer the Library team has reclassified, relabelled and relocated around 6000 books,  a fifth of the overall collection. These section have a slightly amended classification scheme and are generally ordered by authors surname.

The sections that have been updated are:

  • Social Anthropology
  • Economic History
  • Economics
  • French, German and asian and middle eastern languages
  • Linguistics
  • Theology (Partial reclassification)
  • Land Economy

This has meant some sections have been renumbered and moved, all of which is reflected in the updated classification scheme and maps which you can find outside the Library Office or on the website.  The new classification scheme is also available here:  Classification scheme with locations.

The key highlights are:

  • Archaeology and Phsyical Anthropology (Section 1.) are now in Middle Room Left Cloister
  • Anthropology is now in Section 3, which has been renamed Human, Social and Political Sciences
  • Economics is now Section 5.
  • All languages, Linguistics and Anglo-Saxon, Norse & Celtic are now part of Section 6.
  • English Economic and Social History is now part of the History Section (Section 8.)
  • History (section 8) has moved around the first floor

We’ve taken the opportunity to redo the labels on these books as well.

Ramsay Hall

Ramsay Hall Study Room is up and running again this year and will be open from 8am to midnight every day this term. The water cooler and new Recreational Reading section can be found there as well as the large study desks and sofas and armchairs. A gentle reminder that Ramsay Hall is part of the Library and so normal Library rules apply there.

Plug Sockets in Right Cloister

image of new plug sockets on desks

You may need to sit down for this update… we now have extra plug sockets, and usb sockets, for each shared desk in Right Cloister. The extension leads are no more… We really are pushing the boat out in this the last year in the Pepys building. Hope they help!

The New Library Building

image of the new library building works

The New Library build is continuing on schedule and updates can be found online and outside the Library Office, above the drop box. The construction gallery is worth checking out if your interested in progress, although you’ll notice the brickwork is now visible from second court. The gallery can be found here.

Library rules

Library rules trimmed 6

College libraries are a special and unique resource as they are just for you and your fellow Magdalene students, fellows and staff only. It is a welcoming and safe place for you to study and the rules we have in place reflect the desire to keep it as such. Essentially the rules are about respecting your fellow students, the building in which you are working and the College staff that support you. Please familiarise yourself with the rules and guide to studying in the Library: Library rules and guidance.

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